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FANTASY FOOTBALL WEEKLY FEATURES

Quarterback Watch Report - Week 15
Scott Boyter
December 12, 2006
Top Ten Fantasy QB’s to own Comment
1  NO Drew Brees Any questions? After his decimation of Dallas, Brees has re-established himself as The Man. The L.T. of QBs will lead a lot of teams to championships this season. Ride this horse the next two weeks, as he should light up the Redskins and Giants.
2 CIN Carson Palmer Even with three picks, his 297 yards and two scores helped more teams than he hurt. Even though the Bengals figure to rely heavily on the run against Indy's pathetic rush defense, Palmer will get enough opportunities to where he'll be a must start.
3 IND Peyton Manning The yardage was there but not the TDs, and that's why Manning slips. He'll bounce back with a huge game against Cincinnati. The Bengals have greatly improved on defense. We'll see just how much they've improved after Manning gets a shot at them.
4 STL Marc Bulger Give the Rams credit for showing some fight against the Bears, even though they were still smoked. Bulger was fantastic in trash time, and showed his connection with Torry Holt hasn't completely disappeared. Trash time or no, 356 yards and three scores against that defense is impressive to say the least. Two concerns, however – No. 1 he goes up against the Oakland D on the road, and No. 2 he took a couple of serious body blows late against Chicago, and he was already nursing bad ribs. Keep a close, close eye on the injury report before committing to him.
5 GB Brett Favre When he's good, Favre is still easily a Top 5 quarterback. He was good against San Fran, so here he is. It doesn't matter who you put at receiver; Favre will find a way to get it to him. Ruvell Martin? Who the hell is that? I could line up at WR for the Pack and probably get 50 and a TD. Get ready for a Favre feast at home against Detroit.
6 SD Philip Rivers Rivers got out of his mini-funk with a strong 279-yard, two-TD game against the Broncos' tough D. Two main factors make Rivers a Top 10 QB; Antonio Gates and the ability to check down to LaDainian Tomlinson, who is always a threat to take a screen pass to the house.
7 TEN Vince Young The kid just keeps impressing. Did anyone else see that 39-yard TD run in OT coming? And the thing that's most impressive is that he made it look so easy. I'm not saying he's a great play against the Jaguars this week, but considering how well he's done the past few weeks, you better have a whole lot better option before you bench him.
8 DET Jon Kitna Kitna clings to the list basically because he managed a score and nearly 300 yards against the Vikings. But this will probably be his last appearance. His matchup this week against Green Bay looks tasty on paper, but Kevin Jones is out with a broken foot. No running game means big problems.
9 DAL Tony Romo Well, now we find out how Romo reacts to misfortune. Let's see how he rebounds from his first bad outing. Since the Cowboys now know they can't just show up and wail on an opponent, they'll be playing with desperation. Look for a bounce back from No. 9, even on the road against Atlanta.
10 NE Tom Brady Wow. Brady didn't even crack the Top 30 in this week's list of passing leaders, with only 78 yards and two lost fumbles in a shutout loss to Miami. But you know Brady will be back in a huge way at home against the woeful Titans.

(Note – this listing considers the rankings of QB’s if a draft was held today)

Climbing Up The Ladder

Eli Manning (NYG) – You can make a good case that Manning should be in the Top 10 at the expense of Kitna, especially after his second good outing in a row. But he was so bad before this mini-run, it'll take another good showing to get him back. And I'm sure he's really concerned.

Matt Hasselbeck (SEA) – Hasselbeck rebounded from a lousy game against Denver to light it up against Arizona for 243 yards and three scores. But it was in a losing effort, and who knows how that will affect the Seahawks? Plus, Darrell Jackson will miss the game with a toe injury.

Jeff Garcia (PHI) – His numbers weren't earth-shattering (164 yards, two TDs) against the Redskins, but Garcia is bringing Philly fans hope that they still have a playoff pulse, and he's put up two good fantasy performances as well. Is he worth a start against the Giants? Well, if you're strapped at QB there are a lot worse choices.

Rex Grossman (CHI) – We rip him when he's lousy, so we'll give him props when he's good. His totals weren't fantastic (200 yards, two TDs) against the Rams, but those are great numbers considering how bad he was previously. He's still way too frenetic to rely on, however.

Chris Weinke (CAR) – Kudos for his 423-yard, one-TD outing. But even if Jake Delhomme doesn't return from an injured thumb, Weinke's way too risky against Pittsburgh.

Sliding Back

Michael Vick (ATL) – Vick has put up Top 10-, if not Top 5-worthy numbers this season. But just when you're ready to name him a fantasy force, he comes up with trash like this against the Bucs. Odds are he'll have a great game against the suddenly beleaguered Cowboy D, but would you risk your playoff life on him?

Jay Cutler (DEN) – Yeah, he had decent numbers against the Chargers (188 yards, two scores), but the Broncos have to be on the verge of mutiny. And their offensive players are looking like untouchables from a fantasy perspective. You throw away a chance at the playoffs to give a kid experience? What about guys like John Lynch who may not ever get another shot at the postseason? What do you tell them? Another brilliant move by Mike Shanahan. It wouldn't be a surprise if Denver loses the rest of its games.

David Garrard (JAC) – How can a team score 44 points with its quarterback not doing squat? When it runs for 375 yards. This was an anomaly for sure, but Garrard probably screwed a few teams out of the playoffs.